Monday, August 18, 2014

Death of Social Media Advertising

Edit Note: I usually post on Mondays but on Saturday, August 30th, I will do a special guest post with Elyse Salpeter's and her release of "Flying to the Fire." There will be prizes that day. Don't miss it!  

Is social media advertising dead?

Well, yes and no.  It is still out there.  Facebook and others will gladly take your money.  In fact, they want your money.  So, yes, social media advertising is very much alive.  

Oh, sorry.  I meant "free" advertising, like it was just a few years ago.

In that case, NO.

It is now a well-known fact that Facebook has revamped their site to monitor your advertising you attempt on your page.  Yes, Big Brother is watching you, so you're not as paranoid as you thought.

IF you place a link in your comment (status), it has been rumored that Facebook will limit who will see and how many you can distribute it to.  Don't be fooled by the "Public" posting.  It won't be.  You stick in a link and you've doomed that status post to a limited audience.  If you want to advertise, you must pay to advertise on Facebook.  It is now a corporation that works on profit margin.  Its start-up days are over.  To by-pass this "law" is rather simple - make your status update with the information but eliminate the link.  Click to post and immediately comment on it - adding a link in that comment to what you are attempting to hawk, be it a book to sell, or a site to visit.

While I'm discussing Facebook, have you noticed that you don't see "all" your friends' updates any more?  That's right - when was the last time you saw something from that person who likes the same strange foods you do and lives in Utah?  In fact, when was the last time you noticed anything from your buddy in Toledo, Ohio - a mere fifty miles away?  

So, to see if he is still alive and well, you type in his name and ... WOW!  He's been posting away to the tune of about 5-8 posts per day.

Of course, you did see the post from XYZ and their offer and also a post from your cousin that she posted, uh, 18 hrs ago as one of top three items.  Hmm?  

So, you click on one of your buddy's post and comment.  Suddenly you start to see a few of his posts come through.

AH-HA!  For you to see what any of your friends are doing, you MUST interact with them.  You can't just scroll through the last umpteen hundred posts and review.  Facebook is now forcing you to interact.  Of course, this IS social media but social media also includes taking notice, not commenting on every item, every day.

But back to advertising.  You can advertise with Facebook but you must narrow your view.  You can't just advertise to everyone.  You need to narrow your audience.  Of course, Facebook will use the information you have given them to create the audience.  

What does that mean?  If you don't give any information, more than likely, you'll never see those ads.  If I were to want to advertise to males, ages 25-35, in the state of Ohio, and reads horror.  If you don't state your sex, age, or where you live, and share if you read horror, my advertising will ignore you.  Why is this bad?  You might be the one interested in what I have to sell.  Let's say I'm hustling my latest horror book?  I'm spending money to advertise to who?  Not you, my target audience.

Some of you are nodding and saying: Twitter is free.  And you will see almost every tweet of your friends.  

TRUE.  And there are those who use automatic programs to send out a sales pitch about every 20 mins, or maybe it is every hour.  I walked away from Twitter for 15 mins and I had over 600 tweets to review.  Trust me, I read EVERY one of them!  NOT!  So, if others are like me, scrolling ads are just that -- scrolling without reading.

The same hold true for Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr and all the others.  Too much scrolling.  Too much to consume.


Five years ago, maybe even ten years ago... social media was THE choice.  Today?  EH.

So share with me, how would you advertise?  Or how DO you advertise?

Until next I ramble on...


  1. There are so many opioions on this subject. I recently read a post stating one should only "like" on FB if they truly like something. So maybe today's post isn't great, but I will miss tomorrow's if I don't keep "liking".

    I think Twitter's main use these days is name recognition and meeting people you might enjoy chatting with on FB. Paid promos seem to be the only sure fire way to sell books. Of course, I am not an expert, just opinion.

  2. We call it book face now because everything is bass-ackwards and not as efficient as it could be. Great post!

  3. I find it hard to keep up with all of this. I use Facebook, twitter, pinterest, goodreads and my own websites but don't really think they sell books. I have paid for some advertising in the past but am always hoping to learn from what others have used and found helpful.

  4. Wow, this is intense, but interesting. How do we advertise not including social media? How do you get your work out to people? Honestly, the best way, it seems to me, is to simply build relationships, get people spreading the word. Word of mouth on social media might be the way to go.